February 2023 News & Updates!

Hey hey comic readers and Chio aficionados of all sorts! It’s February, and that means it’s time for another news and updates post!

What’s Up?

To get straight to the point: I’ve been doing physical therapy for my hand and joint issues for the past few weeks, and according to the therapists I’ve been working with, there’s already been some improvement, which is a great sign. I’m working on strengthening the muscles around my joints so that everything is better supported, but that’s a bit of a process. That said, I’m still working more slowly than normal so as not to strain my joints. My current plan is to keep working on a buffer so I have some more flexible time between new Follower pages. Chio Club folks have been getting early looks at what I’ve been working on, so if that’s your thing, come join us!

What’s Next?

As it’s been lately, I’m slowly working on Follower book revisions and new Follower pages. This is mostly hindered by, of course, the problems I’m having with my hands, but again, I’m hopeful this will improve over the next few months. My main goal is getting that Follower buffer going, and I’m part of the way there. I don’t have a solid date for Follower’s return yet, but I’m optimistically guessing during this spring.

To help save my hands, I’ve been working on some less drawing-intense projects, including some video content. I’m not quite finished with the first, but it’s going to be a storytime type of video on the topic of what’s up with my hands, since I’ve learned some kind of interesting things in the process of figuring out what’s up with them. It’ll likely be up in a week or two, since I have a bunch of stream archive content queued up between now and then and I’d like to let that run out first. I’ve got a few ideas for other types of videos, too, but they’re a bit more labor intensive and will come out in due time. Meanwhile, if you want to be the first to know when the new content drops, subscribe to our Youtube channel and (as they say) don’t forget to hit that bell for notifications!!! I hate myself a little for typing that sentence, just so you know.

What’s New?

Get all our digital mini comics on itch.io for 50% off each, or $5 as a bundle, during Valentine’s week! Show us a little love and get some little comics!

Our Teepublic store will be up to 35% off
February 8 – 11 and February 22 – 26*

*Sale dates are not final and therefore subject to change.

Our Redbubble sticker shop will be up to 20% off
February 25 – 28*

*Sale dates are not final and therefore subject to change.

Community News

This month, I’m slowly getting back into streaming while I work on comic stuff! I am also going to work some gaming back in as well, but I’ve got to start slow. Right now my plan is to try and fit in one stream a week, and you can always find out the latest schedule by visiting my Twitch schedule page or the streaming page on Radiochio.com. My streams are pretty chill, so if you just want to drop in and talk comics, or even drop in and lurk while I draw, that’s all great. Watching my Twitch is an easy way to help the comic, because I do get paid for ad views. Subscribing helps out even more, and if you have Amazon Prime you get a free Twitch subscription each month to the channel of your choice! Not saying you have to use it on mine, but I’d surely be grateful if you did. *wink wink*

I’ve also heard that Twitch has loosened up some of their affiliate exclusivity rules, so I might be able to simultaneously stream to other platforms? I have to do a bit more research, but if you tend to watch streams on other sites like Picarto or Youtube, there’s a chance I’ll be coming there as well. Always gotta be looking for new ways to reach new readers!

And, as usual, our Discord is always open and welcoming new folks! It’s a little slow and quiet, but that’s not always a bad thing. Pop on in for comic updates, general chat, and potentially some new community events in the coming year!

Thanks For Reading

Once again, thank you so much for reading about our newest stuff, even if things are still a bit slow.

2022 in Review

It’s the end of yet another year, so as usual, it’s a good time to look back on everything that happened in 2022! I want to sincerely thank all of our supporters – whether you’re a member of the Chio Club, or just a regular reader of our comics, it means a lot. Delade and I couldn’t do what we do without you all. 

So… let’s get into it!

A challenger approaches (it’s 2022, that was the challenger)

2022 presented a lot of challenges and difficulties for us. I spent a lot of the year assisting a family member with an ongoing medical issue – running with them to appointments and so on – which sapped a lot of my time and energy. Still, I did my best to keep up with pages until I just couldn’t. In February I injured the thumb on my drawing hand, and it’s been a persistent issue ever since. This has taken quite some time to deal with properly, but recently I’ve been able to buy a splint that allows me to work carefully, without further injuring myself. I’ve got some specialist appointments lined up for the very end of the year, and I’m looking forward to hopefully getting some answers and squaring away this particular problem so I can get back to normal comic updates. 

Life in general has been pretty challenging as well. We were illegally evicted from our apartment in 2021 (which is an entire terrifying story all on its own) and while we’re in a safe and relatively stable place now, it’s going to take time to get back to a true state of “normal.” That said, I want to express how much the Chio Club supporters really helped keep Follower and our other projects online this year, as well as helped keep us fed on a few occasions. I can’t truly convey how grateful we are for this. It’s been a rough year, and that’s something that has really helped.

On to more positive news!

Becoming a Brave Chio

This year, I wanted to try and do more to cultivate the reader community around Follower. I’ve been in an introverted shell for a while, and it seemed like a good time to try and break out of it a little bit. I put some work into improving the Radio Chio Discord, and have seen a little bit of success. This is obviously something that is going to be an ongoing process, but if you’re a reader of our comics and want a friendly place to hang out online, you should come join us! I’d like to try and come up with more community events for 2023, but I definitely appreciate any input from folks in the community. Anyone can join us on Discord, but there is an extra channel just for Chio Club members, too!

One of the other things I’ve been trying out this year is doing more streaming, both of comic and art work as well as games. It’s been an interesting experiment! I was able to make the requirements to be a Twitch Affiliate, which means I can actually get paid when folks drop in to watch streams, and is another means to help keep our comics going. I’ve had to slow down a little bit in the past couple of months due to my hand injury, but I’m trying to fit in what I can!

You can join me on Twitch to hang out while I draw or play a game, and if you follow me there, you can get notifications for when I go live. If you just hang out while I’m on, I do get paid via ads that are shown during the stream, so it’s also an easy way to help support my comics. You can also subscribe to my channel to get fancy badges and Chio emotes!

Along with streaming, I’ve been experimenting with creating more video content this year for various formats. I put some more effort into making short Follower-related videos for Tiktok, and was pleasantly surprised by the response! I somehow posted one of the most-viewed things I’ve ever made on the internet when Dia’s story went kind of micro-viral, so that was pretty exciting.

In addition, I’ve been adding more content to our YouTube page, including previous stream archives, comic art time lapses, and more. I have more ideas about making some more “how to” style videos and some story time type chatty videos, but those will likely be coming in the new year. These are things I can probably produce pretty quickly while I’m making other things, since that’s what they’re about, so I hope you’ll look forward to that! You can find us on YouTube here. 

Social media has seemed pretty tumultuous in the past few months, so I’m doing a few things with our content to help smooth that out. First of all, most of our major content will originate here on Radiochio.com (or on its own comic site, like follower.messenger-comic.com) first, and will trickle down to other platforms afterward. So if you follow us on social sites for updates, you probably won’t notice a big difference, but it’ll be helpful if or when any particular social platform drops off the face of the planet. You know, apropos of nothing. 

Additionally, I’m combining our monthly newsletter with the monthly update post I put out for Chio Club members on Patreon and Ko-Fi. It’ll be free to view here, there, or in your email. This is mostly because a lot of content got duplicated between these two, and it makes more sense to keep it together. Plus, this means that you can also follow us on Patreon or Ko-Fi for free to continue to get news and updates. Regular Chio Club content will remain a paid reward for subscribers, though. 

Join the Chio Club:

Last thing on this topic: I made a handy links page that points to every place you can find us online. I’ve been experimenting more with alternative social platforms, and it’s been kind of refreshing. Check it out and see what you might have missed!

On to comic news!

Comic news (the good stuff)

The biggest comic news we have for 2022: Follower won DrunkDuck’s 2022 Best Anthropomorphic Comic! This was a total surprise, and we’re really honored to have been recognized! Thank you so much to folks who nominated or voted for us. 

Follower became available on Globalcomix, a relatively new comics site that’s really great for both creators and readers. Currently, most of the comic is available to read for free there, just as it is on the main site, and 3 issues with bonus content are available for purchase. More content will be coming in 2023, and the existing issues will get updated art, since that’s an ongoing project.

Throughout the year, I’ve been working on retouching and resizing older Follower pages so I can do two things: publish Volume One of Follower, and release our newly redesigned website to the public. Chio Club members can currently check out an early version of the site, but it won’t be complete without the retouched pages. The edits for Volume One primarily depend on making art fixes to chapters one and two, and text updates to the rest of the comic for readability and consistency. This has been a slower progress than I hoped due to my hand injury, but I’m getting there!

Follower remains on a hiatus for now. I’m hoping to get a small buffer of about 5 pages (or more) ready to go before I start updating normally again. Chio Club members have been getting early looks at new pages as I’ve been working through them.

Messenger has been more neglected than I’ve hoped for this year. I have a stack of half-finished pages waiting to be finished. I am not sure where this will fit into the schedule, but I’m really, really hoping to get to them in 2023. I’m as frustrated as anyone by how long it’s taken to get these updates made, but life has been wild, as you’ve seen.

Thank you for reading

So that’s where things stand around here. Again, I want to express how thankful we are for all our readers and supporters. We really wouldn’t be able to keep up a lot of what we do without you all. You keep us going, sometimes literally, and it means the world to both of us. 

Here’s to a better, brighter, and stronger 2023!

Ask a Chio: Does a Chio’s tail signify moods at all? (wagging tail = happy, tail between legs = scared, etc.)

“Does a chio’s tail signify moods at all? (wagging tail = happy, tail between legs = scared, etc.)”

Chio ears are usually the best way to guess at what they’re feeling! They’re a lot like cats’ ears, and change direction based on their current mood. Check out this answer for a bit more info!

Chios (and their tails and ears) are from Messenger and Follower!

Ask a Chio: Does a Chio have an afterlife? (since it was made by science n’ stuff)

Interesting question! Chios don’t have any really specific spiritual beliefs, but rather each individual tends to form their own beliefs and conclusions. Some believe in an afterlife, some don’t. 

As to whether there’s an actual afterlife for Chios, well, that’s about as easy to confirm as it is for humans! I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

Eldora is from Messenger, and Chios are featured in both Messenger and Follower!

Ask a Chio will be reopening soon for Chio Club members on a limited time basis! Pledge at the $5 or above level by February 5, 2022 and you’ll get to ask your very own Chio question! Find out more in this post on Follower’s blog.

Ask a Chio: Hello there fellow chio! (…)

Hello there fellow chio! As you can clearly see, I am a chio just like you and certainly not a human in a chio suit. So, how about we talk about normal chio things?

Chios are very giving!

They are from the comics Messenger and Follower!

Ask a Chio will be reopening soon for Chio Club members on a limited time basis! Pledge at the $5 or above level by February 5, 2022 and you’ll get to ask your very own Chio question! Find out more in this post on Follower’s blog.